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Just When You Get Cynical...

While on a family vacation to Washington DC, the crime capitol of our country (at least this is what I am told), I became 'separated' from my camera bag which held several items including cameras and a cell phone. Panic sets in as your mind races back to everywhere you sat, everything you sat down and who was sitting around you just moments before. Your mind begins to expect illegal phonecalls on your cellphone, devious things done with pictures and pawn shops with barred windows. More than anything else, you think of replacing the items that are estranged from you. You call around for help and are told that no one has seen your bag and that likely someone has taken it. They tell you to just wait a few days, maybe someone will turn it in. You think to yourself, "Yeah right."  I came home and began making plans to move on and replace what was gone.

On Being or Becoming a Missionary

When people ask me for my job title, I try to tell them, but it actually makes no sense to most people. After spending a few minutes trying to explain what a "Dean of International Studies" is, I generally just say that I am a missionary to a whole lot of countries. I like the idea of having a mission and going on a mission. In fact, all who enter my office at Sunset have to pass a sign on my door that reads, "If God calls you to be a missionary, don't stoop to be a King." Sometimes, however, i forget what an amazing role I am allowed to play in the Kingdom.

Goracke Family Arrives In Singapore

Charles and Tamara Cook and the students of the Singapore International Bible Institute (pictured here as they completed a course taught by Charles Cook on Revelation) are excited that Tom and Nancy Goracke and their children have finally made it to Singapore!  Our team in Singapore is now complete and SIBI and the Pasir Panjong congregation can now multiply the current classes and mission efforts to surrounding countries. The Goracke family will be staying with Winston Chong (a deacon at Pasir Panjang that works extensively in administering our school) and his family until their apartment is ready to receive them. This is a blessed event and we are thankful to God and to those who are supporting the Goracke family for making this moment possible.

Letter From The Family Regarding Sunday Ekanem

We have received a letter from Sunday Ekanem Jr. regarding the burial arrangements for Sunday Ekanem Sr (pictured here).

As you will recall, Sunday was a graduate of SIBI (class of 1973) and was working with the External Studies Division and International Studies Division of SIBI in Nigeria at the CAO Essien School of Evangelism. I will share the letter with you in the space below, but want to first let you know that if you would like to help the family with a monetary gift to cover funeral expenses, that would be appreciated. You can send it to SIBI and write on the memo line "Sunday Ekanem family" or send a note with your check. Thanks in advance for your generosity.

In Him,

Chris

What We Are About At SIBI International

I was asked an interesting question on Sunday morning. I was asked what my job really was at Sunset. I answered that I am a missionary, the Dean of the International Studies Division and an instructor in AIM and Advanced Missions. He asked me, "Okay but what does that mean? What does this SIBI International do?" I told him about the 57 schools in 37 countries and what the schools were like, but this isn't what he wanted. We talked about the conversions, the congregations planted and preachers trained, but this still wasn't what he had in mind. He wanted a mission statement of sorts, and I thought it was a reasonable request. I have never been comfortable with using human words to describe a spiritual work, so I will let the Holy Spirit put our mission statement forth through the writings of the Psalmist.

Sunday Ekanem

I just found out that a former Sunset graduate, gospel preacher and the Dean of the CAO Essien Bible School of Nigeria, one of our 57 SIBI International ministry training schools, passed away suddenly at his home in Nigeria. Sunday Ekanem was a beloved graduate, a beloved co-worker and a great man of love and faith. He will certainly be missed.

The funeral details are still to be determined, but we certainly want to be praying for his wife Joy, his children, and all of the Christians in Nigeria who love him and have depended on him.

I was blessed to be with Brother Ekanem at the school and have witnessed his impact in ministry. I was proud to have him as a brother, proud of our common heritage with Sunset and grateful that he was willing to work with us. Soon we will have to see the possible impact this has on the school, but for now we just thank God for this brother and pray for his family, both physical and spiritual.

I will pass along more information as it becomes available.

In Him, Chris

Graduation Means A Little More This Year

Graduation is typically my favorite time of year. I have been preparing the International Division page for the graduation here at SIBI and am thinking about what to say on behalf of our SIBI International ministry training school graduates. With over 450 of them, I really want to represent them well.

Emergency Trip Home

Greetings. As many of you already know, I had to leave my teaching trip to Ukraine early due to the death of my grandmother, Mary Ann McCoy. I am so thankful to Robert Waller (preacher at College Hill in Fort Worth) for teaching the remainder of the Revelation class and Jay Don Rogers (Director of UBI) for teaching the remainder of the church planting class. We will be working with the congregation recently planted in a new facitilty in Azotny to start well, grow and develop. Please pray for this young congregation.

Meeting Ilina

Greetings. We had a great time of study, fellowship and reunion at our leadership seminar today! The UBI classroom was filled with graduates, students and local Christians for our time of fellowship together. Pictured above is Robert Waller teaching those in attendance about the need for servant leadership. Natasha Maluga is pictured doing her usual excellent job of interpreting. It was so great to see these former students and see that they are still faithfully serving in the Kingdom!

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